World Construction Symposium

World Construction Symposium

Make Your Backyard Family Friendly

by Wallace Simmons

Backyards just feel right for hosting family parties, letting the kids play and relaxing on a lazy afternoon. However, a field of grass with a tree or two may not feel like it actually promotes family time. Make over your backyard so that it's family friendly for numerous activities.


Whether the kids are playing or you're enjoying time with a good book, shade is essential in the sunny months. The dilemma comes in landscaping that doesn't take over the yard.

Plant your tallest trees around the perimeter. For instance, plant a large shade tree such as a Norway maple or a sugar maple in one corner of the yard. Plant two or three large shrubs nearby. Include a small copse of evergreens in another corner, such as Canadian hemlock or Columnar white pine. Between the two groupings, you'll have shady spots no matter the time of day without overshadowing your entire yard.


The most obvious method for acquiring privacy is by building a privacy fence. However, there are more options than the traditional wooden fence. For one, you could have the contractors incorporate trellis panels, which offer an open feel while maintaining your privacy. Another option is having a living fence installed. In this case, trailing shrubs are trained to climb a wooden structure. Either option keeps your backyard feeling homey.

Family Room

The family room is a popular spot inside your home, right? There's no reason you can't channel this natural gathering place outdoors. Better Homes and Gardens suggests starting with an arbor sheltering a fireplace or fire pit. Train trailing plants such as grapes, honeysuckle or roses up and over the wooden structure. Add comfortable outdoor furniture. By grouping the three elements together – warmth, protection and comfort – you create an outdoor retreat.


The other great gathering space is the dining room. Well, the outdoor dining room actually starts with an outdoor kitchen. It's not necessary to invest in much more than a grill. Rather, set up a work station nearby to facilitate food preparation. The work station can be a simple shelving unit kitted out with storage containers and a cutting board.

For the actual dining, that depends on your outdoor living style. For instance, if your family is more prone to intimate dinners, a traditional setup with a table and chairs works well. If you enjoy hosting barbecues, consider scattering seats with accent tables placed nearby. Make sure to put up one set near the shade trees, though.

A family friendly backyard means creating creature comforts in an outdoor setting. Talk to your local landscape contractors about planting trees for shade and trailing plants over your arbor. Install a homey fence, and designate areas specifically for family activities.


About Me

World Construction Symposium

Hi, I'm Lenora. One of my favorite things is traveling. And when I travel, I especially love to see the various architecture around the world. Ever since I built a house (well, you know, hired a contractor to help me design it and then build it for me), I have been fascinated with the construction process. I love looking at international architecture like Saint Basil's Cathedral in Russia or Angkor Wat in Cambodia. How were they made? It is just so interesting to me, from the foundation's support to all the intricate details such as paving or roofing. I started this blog to talk about all the parts of construction. I hope you enjoy it!